Everything We Know About the Judds’ ‘Final Tour’
At the start of 2022, it seemed as though this year would mark a historic comeback for the beloved country music duo the Judds. On April 1, it was announced that Wynonna and Naomi Judd would reunite for a highly-anticipated performance of "Love Can Build a Bridge" at the 2022 CMT Music Awards.
Just hours after they took the stage, the Judds revealed that they would be hitting the road again later that year for a very special arena tour. Featuring support from special guest Martina McBride, The Judds: The Final Tour was set to be a musical celebration of the mother-and-daughter duo's 38-year-long career, and their first tour in over a decade.
Everything changed on March 30, 2022, when Naomi Judd died by suicide in her home, located just outside of Nashville. The tragic news of her death came just one day before the Judds were set to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. In an astounding display of strength and determination, Wynonna attended the Hall of Fame's medallion ceremony as scheduled, accompanied by Naomi's husband, Larry Strickland, and her sister, Ashley, who tearfully accepted Naomi's medallion on her behalf.
Just two weeks later, the Judd family organized a public memorial service and musical tribute in Naomi's honor. Naomi Judd: A River of Time was held at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium on May 15 and featured powerful performances and tributes from Naomi's friends and colleagues, including Brad Paisley, Emmylou Harris with Allison Russell, Jamey Johnson, Carly Pearce and Little Big Town. During the globally live-streamed event, Wynonna also voiced her intentions to keep singing and to move forward with the duo's previously announced tour.
The Judds' comeback tour has now been transformed into a historic celebration of Naomi's legacy, talents and music. Wynonna says the choice to move forward with the concert dates was fueled by their loyal and loving fans.
“I am humbled, once again, by the loyalty of the fans who have been with us for 38+ years, who continue to show up for me when I need them the most. I am grateful that we will continue to honor the Judds legacy, together,” Wynonna Judd shared in a statement on May 19.
"I am so happy that in this time of grief for us all, Wynonna has agreed to move forward with this tour as my sweet wife Naomi would have wanted her to do,” Larry Strickland noted.
Keep reading to find out everything we know about the Judds' Final Tour:
Many of the artists scheduled to take part in the arena tour also took the stage during Naomi Judd: A River of Time musical celebration and memorial service. This includes Brandi Carlile, who has been vocal about her longtime love for the Judds, even noting that they were the first band she ever saw perform live. Earlier this month, Carlile also invited Wynonna out on stage to perform two Judds' hits during her two-night tour stop in Nashville.
Ashley McBryde, who supplied an emotional performance of "Love is Alive" during Naomi Judd: A River of Time, is also set to appear on the tour. Martina McBride, who was originally scheduled to be the Judds' opening act, will open each show with a selection of her own hits as well as her own renditions of the duo's most beloved songs.
Trisha Yearwood, who was one of the many country stars who shared tributes to Naomi on social media following the announcement of her death, has also been added to the lineup. Faith Hill will make a special appearance at the tour's final concert date in the duo's home state of Kentucky on Oct. 29.
"What a full-circle moment it will be to end the tour in Kentucky where it all began. It means so much to have my sisterfriend, Faith, join me for this musical celebration." Wynonna said in a statement. “It is pretty amazing – all of the people who have come forward to offer up their time and their gifts. I am feeling extra grateful.”
Additional performers are also expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
The addition of an all-female lineup of guest performers has shifted the format of The Final Tour as the ultimate "Girls' Night Out" celebration. The Judds changed the landscape of country music for women in many facets, opening up new doors for future generations of female artists by breaking records and creating a sound all their own.
Each of the performers chosen to take the stage alongside Wynonna were greatly impacted by the duo's music and are likely to share their own personal stories and memories of Naomi during the show. The concerts should serve as both a fitting tribute to Naomi and a celebration of the Judds' lasting impact within country music.
Although most of the show's production elements are likely to be kept under wraps until the tour kicks off in September, each show is sure to offer fans an emotional, once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Although a set list for the tour has not yet been revealed publicly, fans can expect to hear many of the superstar duo’s biggest career hits. Over the course of their career, the Judds earned 14 No. 1 hits on the Billboard charts, including “Why Not Me,” “Mama He’s Crazy,” “Have Mercy” and “Turn It Loose.” Fans can also expect to hear many of those familiar tunes, along with other classic tunes like their anthemic 1990 single “Love Can Build a Bridge" and a few deep cuts like "John Deere Tractor."
Although most details about the shows are being kept under wraps, there will likely be a few surprises in store for concertgoers, including surprise guests and special one-night-only collaborations.
Tickets for all 11 The Judds: The Final Tour dates are currently on sale and available for purchase via Ticketmaster.
The Tour Dates:
Sept. 30 — Grand Rapids, Mich. @ Van Andel Arena
Oct. 1 — Toledo, Ohio @ Huntington Center
Oct. 7 — Sioux Falls, S.D. @ Denny Sanford Premiere Center
Oct. 8 — Green Bay, Wisc. @ Resch Center
Oct. 14 — Duluth, Ga. @ Gas South Arena
Oct. 15 — Huntsville, Ala. @ Propst Arena @ the Von Braun Center
Oct. 21 — Durant, Okla. @ Choctaw Grand Theater
Oct. 22 — Fort Worth, Texas @ Dickies Arena
Oct. 27 — Biloxi, Miss. @ Mississippi Coast Coliseum
Oct. 28 — Nashville, Tenn. @ Bridgestone Arena
Oct. 29 — Lexington, Ky. @ Rupp Arena